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Ukraine: 10,000 Demonstrate Against Kuchma


Kyiv, 12 October 2002 (RFE/RL) -- More than 10,000 Ukrainians gathered in Kyiv today to demonstrate against President Leonid Kuchma. The demonstrators included members of the communist, socialist, and center-right parties, which accuse Kuchma of corruption and abuse of office. Despite an official ban on demonstrations, police presence appeared to be negligible and no violence was reported.

Opposition parties have recently increased pressure on Kuchma to resign and have organized several demonstrations.

Last month, U.S. officials said there was evidence that Kuchma personally approved the sale of Kolchuga early-warning radar systems to Iraq in violation of UN sanctions.

U.S. and British officials are scheduled to arrive in Ukraine tomorrow to investigate the allegations. Kuchma denies any wrongdoing.

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